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Why Data on Health-Care Price Variation Doesn’t Itself Solve the Problem

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman discusses a new Blue Cross Blue Shield Association report on “extreme price variation” in health care services and the limits of consumer information as a solution to the problem.

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How High Drug Prices Weigh on the Sickest Americans

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explores the data behind public concern about prescription drug costs and highlights that the people most in need are the most burdened by the problem.

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Americans’ Health Priorities Diverge From Washington’s Focus on Obamacare

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman finds the public’s healthcare priorities have more to do with drug costs and other real world issues people deal with using the health care system than the ongoing partisan wrangling over the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

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Dec. 8 Event: Unpacking the Prescription Drug Provisions of the Build Back Better Act

As the Build Back Better Act shifts from the House to the Senate, there’s considerable interest in provisions that would lower the cost of prescription drugs. The House-passed bill would allow the federal government to negotiate prices for some high-cost drugs in Medicare, and set a hard cap on out-of-pocket…

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No Surprises Act Implementation: What to Expect in 2022

The “No Surprises Act,” which establishes new federal protections against most surprise out-of-network medical bills when a patient receives out-of-network services during an emergency visit or from a provider at an in-network hospital without advance notice, will take effect next month. A new KFF brief outlines what to expect in 2022.

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Prices Increased Faster Than Inflation for Half of all Drugs Covered by Medicare in 2020

Recent legislation would require drug companies to pay rebates to the federal government when annual increases in prescription drug prices for Medicare and private insurance exceed the rate of inflation. As context for understanding the possible impact of this proposal, this analysis compares price changes for drugs covered by Medicare Part B (administered by physicians) and Part D (retail prescription drugs) between 2019 and 2020 to the inflation rate over the same period.

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Few Consumers Use Information on Health Provider Quality or Price

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman discusses new poll findings showing very small numbers of consumers are using provider quality and price information.

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A New Way of Measuring Health Costs Sheds Light on Recent Health Spending Trends

National health spending started to grow more rapidly recently after several years of unusually slow growth. This analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis helps to dissect why that may be happening. Using recently-released disease-based health spending data compiled by the federal government, the analysis finds…

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High Health-Care Prices: More Talk Than Action  

In his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explores how price is the major factor that distinguishes the cost of our health care system from those in other developed nations, yet most efforts in the U.S. to address health-care costs don’t focus on price much…

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.